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Thursday, September 12, 2013

Swiss police raid Billionaire Beny Steinmetz Steinmetz's home

Swiss police have raided one of the homes of billionaire Beny Steinmetz, said to be Israel's richest person, according to a person familiar with the matter who asked to remain anonymous.

Bloomberg reported that the raid was ordered by Geneva’s public prosecutor following a request by the government of Guinea and occurred within the last two weeks. No documents were taken away, the person said.

According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, 57-year-old Steinmetz has a net worth of $7.4 billion. His mining company, BSG Resources Ltd., owns a 51% stake in the Simandou iron ore deposit in Guinea.

The west African country is reviewing mining licenses including Simandou’s. In April, a US grand jury investigation began into claims that bribes were paid by BSG Resources for mining rights in Guinea, Bloomberg reported.

Henri Della Casa, a spokesman for the prosecutor’s office in Geneva, declined to comment on the raid. The public relations offices of the Geneva police was unavailable for comment. Ian Middleton, a spokesman for BSG Resources in London, declined to comment as well.

According to Bloomberg, last month Geneva’s public prosecutor said it had opened an investigation at Guinea's request into Onyx Financial Advisors UK, a London-based company whose chief executive officer, Dag Cramer, is a director of BSG Resources.

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